L. A. Banks, legendary writer of paranormal fantasy

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L. A. Banks fan photo- March 2009 (Photo by OctaviaButler.net)L. A. Banks fan photo- March 2009 Panel: L. A. Banks (center) and Nnedi Okorafor (right) talk with panel moderator Nina Mercer at the NBWC Symposium, March 28, 2009. (Photo by OctaviaButler.net)

Genre fans are mourning the passing of L. A. Banks, a prolific writer of paranormal fantasy, romance, and even crime thrillers. She wrote the Vampire Huntress Legend series which includes popular books like The Damned, The Forsaken, and Minion.

She also wrote the Crimson Moon series. The most recent books in that series, Never Cry Werewolf and Left for Undead: A Crimson Moon Novel, came out in 2010.

Fans were thrilled by the beginning of a new series about light and dark, angels and evil. The first book in the series, Surrender the Dark, was published in March. It would be great if fans continued the series by writing fiction inspired by her work.

In March of 2009, she spoke at The National Black Writers Conference Bi-Annual Symposium which was honoring the life of Octavia Butler. She spoke with Nnedi Okorafor on a panel entitled, "The Presence and Influence of Black Writers in Speculative Fiction." As a highly successful horror and fantasy writer, she was truly an inspiration to up-and-coming women writers and her African American heroines were a joy to read.

Ms. Banks died on August 2, 2011 after a struggle with cancer.

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